Teenage years,
Ah, these blessed times.
God, I hate them.

All those guys with their
Voice cracks and
All those girls with their
Stuffed bras.

The staring began in
And I knew I shouldn't
But it was all I could do
To not stare overtly.

And it was so hard
To have been this confused.
Because I shouldn't be
Staring at girls
Because I'm one too
And it was all I could do
To convince myself
It was because I was just
Wishing I had that.

Of course, I knew
It was a lie.
A feeble, rickety lie,
A makeshift one.
One I shouldn't have had
To construct in the first

But I did.

Because who wants to
Try to know themselves
In seventh grade?
And I thought it
Was hard then,
Only in eighth grade
It got even harder
I KNEW what I should be
Staring at
And it certainly wasn't
Her legs

It should've been his muscles.

And I knew he was attractive,
But I just couldn't get myself
To want to draw him
I just couldn't stand to wear
That frilly stuff,
Though I secretly admitted
That it DOES look good
On her,
And god why did they all
Feel the need to wear
Such tight pants?

Because I shouldn't stare.

But it's so

And now, a year later,
It gets harder,
Because people notice
The slightest little
Even if I honestly
Didn't mean it.

And my friends,
All of them so pretty, though I
Don't think they realize.
And it's hard,
Because they are such a
Cuddly bunch
And I'm afraid that
THEY'LL be afraid
To cuddle
If I ever do try
To tell them about this confusion
Over where my eyes go.

And then, the other day
My mom dropped a bomb.
She asked me
What it is I prefer,
And she didn't mean ice cream
And that's how I sorted through
This jumble
Of hectic hormones and
Told her right out.
And now I've realized
That if I never kiss a guy,
I'd be perfectly happy.

And I'm ok with that.

And now, I don't want to
Keep it to myself.
I've accepted that I LIKE
The way well-fitting shirts
Look on girls
And that I really don't care for
Tight fitting shirts
On guys.

Only, I'm terrified.
I don't want my friends,
Who hug instead of say hello
To be afraid
That I only hug them
To "accidentally" cop a feel.
Because I don't,
I would never do that.
I love them all
In a platonic way
Too much for that.
I respect them.
I respect that they
Like the way tight jeans
Fit dudes.

It's a bit irrational,
This fear I have.
But it is plausible.
And all I want
Is to stand up and shout
But then I'm afraid I'll
Hear little whispers of
"Fag" and
In the hallways.

And while I want
Nothing more than to
Post this
I'm afraid that everything
Will change
And not for the better.
Which is why it will probably
Stay hidden for a while.
Like me.

And all I want is to be truthful
To everyone
But it's just...
It's difficult.
But this
Is actually very easy.
It's so easy to be truthful
To myself
And so easy to
Lie to everyone else
And it's all just so

It makes me really upset that

It makes me really upset that we live in a world that would make you feel like you couldn't share this. You are an awesome person and this is really beautiful and heartfelt. A very moving piece.

Thanks man

Oh gosh thank you. It really is nerve-wracking to admit this to other people.

I am so very glad you aren't uncomfortable or anything. Honestly, that'd break my heart.

I think I wrote this the day after my mom asked me, and this poem helped me sort through some of the last bits of confusion.

Writing is a beautiful thing.



Just keep swimming

pianolady's picture

You are not the only one,

You are not the only one, dear. I loved this, and it was helpful to me as well. I'm happy you posted it, because now I don't have to write it for myself, lol. :)

please pass this comment on to a recent blog post! giving comments is as constructive as recieving them. :)

Oh :)

To be completely honest I sort of suspected when I met you that last time... heh.

I am very glad my confused ramblings not only made sense to someone else, but helped them out as well!



Just keep swimming

pianolady's picture

Oh yay! I feel like people

Oh yay! I feel like people just assume I'm straight, so it's nice to hear that at least one person doesn't. xD

They definitely made mom, and another person put me in the same situation recently, with the questioning, so it was nice to know I'm not the only one. I do appreciate that they ask rather than assume, I'd rather they have a clear answer from me than make a wrong one up in their heads. Lol.

Anyways, feel free to PM me or whatevs if you want to talk to me about all this, I'm happy to listen. (And get to know you in general, you're really cool, and SHERLOCK.)

please pass this comment on to a recent blog post! giving comments is as constructive as recieving them. :)

Oh Goody

OH goody! It's nice to have someone to talk to, as a general rule.

Haha... Yah, the thing is that when my mom asked me I was still in a slight state of denial. Eh, whatever. Life goes on, and it;s best to just roll with the punches.

(I'll definitly take you up on that offer, sometime! ;P And yes, SHERLOCK)



Just keep swimming

pianolady's picture

Yes, definitely! lol, I still

Yes, definitely!

lol, I still am. I go between 'it's a phase' and 'wait wut maybe this is actually a thing' 

More of the second, though, now.

(Yay! So much Sherlock. Cannot WAIT for season four, it needs to come out early. Very early. Like, tomorrow. Or even better, today.)

please pass this comment on to a recent blog post! giving comments is as constructive as recieving them. :)

SherlockHolmes's picture

It really annoys me when

It really annoys me when people judge others based on who they like.  The preference you have is your business; nobody else's.  I'm not actually gay myself (though more than once people have thought I am), but I think I can understand how hard it must be....

All that aside, this is an incredible piece.


It is extremely confusing, especially when one starts to actually listen to that little voice in their head saying "yo man, you might not be the straightest one in the room right now." I lucked out, and have an amazing support group. (Funny story: ok so I told my friends and basically two of my closest friends told me they were both bi, and I know one of my friends is gay, and another one is panexual... basically all my friends are gay. This isn't how I expected highschool to be.)

All THAT aside, thank you very much!



Just keep swimming

Well said

Where to start? This piece has such a wonderful, ponderous tone. Your confusion, questioning, searching, honesty all come through. Your writing will open doors for you and others -- it already has, judging by the great feedback you have received. Such a beautiful piece! Simple and complex, personal and universal. Thanks for sharing it.

Susan Reid

Publications Coordinator

Young Writers Project

Thank you, really

Wow... I didn't expect so much wonderful, supportive feedback! I feel like a broken record in saying this, but thank you.



Just keep swimming

doug.demaio's picture

Bravo. Thank you for sharing.

Bravo. Thank you for sharing. This is awesome. I love how you've utilized writing to not only create something beautiful and share it with others, but to actually help others, and to help yourself as well. Truly, that makes an amazing poem.

We also tweet, fb, tumbl, & instagram! :)


I am just happy that these ramblings of about a month or so ago actually managed to help someone other than myself sort through confusing stuff. 

Thank you so very much, all of you.



Just keep swimming

gg's picture

Thank you

I so appreciate the courage it took to write this, then to share it, to see how your words felt, to see how a respectful community would react. And I thank the community for its response so far. Bravo.

Writing is an exercise in clarity, a way to find out what one is thinking, feeling, intending, dreaming, wanting, missing. All of those emotions are here in this piece -- the thoughtfulness towards your friends, trying to make sense of the emotions and physical sensations you were experiencing, understanding yourself and your own desire and happiness.

You are a writer with voice. I feel no differently about you because of this piece. Other than that I admire you even more. 

Keep on writin'

My hat's off to you.


geoff gevalt

ywp farmhand & general instigator

So many thanks, so little time

I really am speechless with thanks for the kind response I have gotten thus far. Really.

And it is true, what you say about writing. I found that writing this was a way to really see how I was feeling. I wrote it without thinking, just putting words down. What you see is almost identical to the original version, with the only changes being a word here or there, and some (eep) gramatical errors. It really has captured the raw emotion that I felt then, that I still, in many ways, feel now. It's been a while, and in the time gap between writing and posting, most of the issues have been resolved. I honestly felt 1000 times better after I wrote this poem. 

Writing is funny that way.

(Honestly, thank you x infinity) 



Just keep swimming

Zo-chan's picture


I'm so happy that you finally decided to share this! I've read through the comments and I was overjoyed to be reminded yet again what an incredible community we have going here! 

A wonderful, wonderful piece!

(on a side note, do you plan to go the VT pride parade this fall? You might find me there!)


Comments are awesome, aren't they? Heck yes they are. So what are you waiting for? Share the love and make someone else's day by leaving a comment!

pianolady's picture

Oh my gosh, we should totally

Oh my gosh, we should totally meet up at the parade. I'm attempting to get my dad to bring me, actually, I hope it works out!

please pass this comment on to a recent blog post! giving comments is as constructive as recieving them. :)

gg's picture

As of...

... Saturday morning, early, 652 people have read this piece.



geoff gevalt

ywp farmhand & general instigator

gg's picture

Monday morning...

...1192 people have read this piece.



geoff gevalt

ywp farmhand & general instigator

gg's picture


I hope you don't mind, but I'd like to share this piece with a few friends of mine. You are up to 1702 people who've read this marevelously expressed piece of courage.



geoff gevalt

ywp farmhand & general instigator

Oh, Yes!

Yes, I am completely fine with that. Thank you so very much for your interest and support in this!

(That number is increadibly large... wow)



Just keep swimming's picture


I'll say it again: wow. This is amazing. Honest. Relatable, even for a girl who likes guys, because that doesn't mean I haven't wondered sometimes too. And it definitely deserves all the reads it's gotten.

And to be honest, I've never known someone close to my age who is openly gay or lesbian, so I'm glad that you're bold enough to share it.


Aw, thank you so much!

Just the other day I finished the whole coming-out thing with a facebook post, and have been very pleased with the response I've gotten. Either nobody is upset, or they're kind enough to keep it to themselves.



Just keep swimming

Quick Shout Out!

I just want to give a quick shout out to this incredible YWP community for the acceptance (or tolerance, but certainly not negativity) being put toward your writing piece. It is incredible to note how many people on this site share and confide in one another about serious topics and personal life events (whether that be about sexuality, racism, or even illness). I hope it inspires the rest of our community to continuly discuss hard topics, and know they have a great audiance prepared with openminds and great feedback!

Thank you for your share. Also, the rythm of your piece is really enjoyable, and felt very aligned with the jumbled/confused feeling of the content. Stanza number five is my favorite. Consider going back through with a fine tooth comb to weed out the couple of spelling errors in there. Also, if you're feeling REALLY brave, I'd love to listen to a spoken word version of this. I gently encourage you to record it (out of my own selfish wish)! Overall, great job!

YWP Intern and feedback enthusiast!

Very True!

That is very true. I know I'm not alone when I say I feel very safe on this website, and couldn't wish for a better community to be part of!

I tried to do a recording once, but I was having trouble with it. I haven't really had much time alone at home to do one yet since then (my family is very loud, recording with them around is difficult to say the least). I do think I'll try again, though!

There is never really enough editing, is there? I really should go back through though.



Just keep swimming